A strain of Salmonella resistant to antibiotics has been found in the UK.

A team of international researchers are calling on health officials to increase monitoring of the "superbug", after it emerged in Africa and has since spread to Europe.

Instances of infection have grown to 500 worldwide in 2008, from only a handful in 2002, according to a report in The Journal of Infectious Diseases.

Dr Simon Le Hello, Co-researcher at Institut Pasteur in Paris, said: "We hope that this publication might stir awareness among national and international health, food, and agricultural authorities so that they take the necessary measures to control and stop the dissemination of this strain before it spreads globally, as did another multidrug-resistant strain of Salmonella, Typhimurium DT104, starting in the 1990s."

Salmonella, is most cases, is not a serious infection, resulting a mild stomach upset. In some cases, particularly in the elderly or those with a weakened immune system, it can be life-threatening. Anti-biotics, often Ciprofloxacin, are used as treatment for the infection.

The Salmonella strain, known as S.Kentucky, has developed a resistance to Ciprofloxacin.

A spokesperson from the UK's Food Standard's Agency (FSA) said: "As part of the FSA strategy to reduce foodborne illness we recommend people follow some basic food safety rules: wash hands properly and keep them clean, cook food thoroughly, chill foods properly and avoid cross-contamination.

"These principles, which are designed to reduce the risk from pathogens, such as Salmonella, are equally applicable whether these pathogens are resistant to antimicrobials or not."